SquishyLove Shawl

December 29, 2010

A raveller wrote and asked me for the pattern.  There was no pattern.    But I may as well make one!  Why not!

Suggested yarn weight: DK / 8 ply (11 wpi)
I knitted this with : 5 balls of “foliage” Morris Quartet 8ply;  and mixed it with leftovers of Noro Silk Garden, maybe a skein or two in total:  mainly used the string and greyish colours from the black/grey coloured balls (colour: 47), and the occasional row with the pink/red coloured balls (colour: 84).
Needle size: US 8 – 5.0 mm

yf = yarn forward (yarn forward and over needle, as if to purl.  Used to make a stitch between two knit stitches)
sl1 = slip 1 (slip the next stitch on to the right hand needle without knitting it)
psso = pass slipped stitch over (on the right hand needle there will be a knit stitch, and to the right of it a slipped stitch.  Lift the slipped stitch using the point of the left hand needle, over the 1 knit stitch and drop it off the needle, leaving the 1 knit stitch still on the right hand needle)

First knitted for Meher.  I started it, then paused to knit something else, then came back to it.  So it probably took about a fortnight to knit, as a casual knitting project.

This shawl is knitted along the length, so it has a smaller number of looong rows rather than an enormous number of short rows.  Be prepared for some calming, mindless knitting.  Good for knitting group meetings, visits to hospital, waiting rooms and other stop-start, low attention environments.

Nr stitches:
I did a swatch, and worked out how long I wanted it to end up.  I used a circular needle, with about a 120cm or so long cable, and cast on about three hundred stitches I think.  Maybe 270?

Colours and texture:
I always had two balls of wool in the mix.  With that many stitches and being in a hurry, I knitted (i.e. mostly not purl, only knit stitches) almost every row, which gives it an uneven, generally garter stitch look.  I prefer garter stitch for colours as it breaks up the stripes.

Having two balls of wool means means that sometimes you have two colours at the start of the row, you’ll pick up colour 1 and knit to the end of the row, and then you’ll have two colours, one at each end.  You have the choice to either turn and continue with colour 1, or go back to the start of the row,  pick up colour 2 and knit with that.  Or you can purl with it!

I occasionally a quick section of stockingette to change the texture (about one or two every inch).  (i.e, knit one row, turn and purl back; or, knit one row, pick up colour from the other end of the knitting and knit again).  Apologies, I can’t think of a less confusing way to explain this.  Let me know if it’s confusing you.

Lacy rows
To get the rows of holes, every now and again, I did the following three rows:

Starting when both colours are at the start of the row.
Row 1:  Knit to end
Row 2:  K1, *yf, sl1, K1, psso, repeat from * to end, maybe K1 or K2 at the end depending on how many stitches you had.
Row 3:  Purl to end   (If you hate purl, you could knit to end, it would look less smooth is all)

I knitted till I ran out of wool.  I thought it wouldn’t be big enough, but when I washed and blocked it, it turned out almost perfect.

Re long tailed cast on with two colours:
I cast on using the long-tail cast on, but when you have two colours you can just start at the beginning of each ball of wool, using one colour for the “top” and the other colour for the “bottom” of the cast on, and you don’t have to worry about running out of wool in the “tail”.

My original project with more photos:

Inspiration from